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The relationship began with a whirl on the Shell Prairie Ferris wheel, 75 years ago. And the memories - and ensuing romance - haven’t faded. Jim Mack, who lived a few miles from Ponsford, was heading off to the county fair with a friend and his wife, whose sister, Irene Halvorson, was asked to join them. Irene, 19, hopped into the front seat with the two. Jim,18, was relegated to the back seat - “alone.” Arriving at the fair, Irene standing off by herself, “I skipped over there,” Jim recalled, “and asked if she’d take a ride on the Ferris wheel.
While lobster, seal and swan were reportedly on the Pilgrim’s menu on Cape Cod, venison and wild fowl were likely the main course at the premiere Thanksgiving meal in 1621, shared with the Wampanoag Indians. Without ovens and the Mayflower’s dwindling sugar supply, the hallmark pies were not to be at the celebration of the harvest. Fast forward a few centuries to Riverside United Methodist Church, where pies aplenty will tempt the hungry hundreds arriving for the 33rd annual Park Rapids feast.
Planning continues to move forward on the agricultural aspect of the Park Rapids Schools’ Outdoor Classroom initiative. A planning session convened last week with Keith Olander, who directs agricultural-related studies at Central Lakes College, facilitating and Al Withers, program director of Minnesota Agriculture in the Classroom, adding insights.
BCamp Wilderness on Bad Axe Lake may soon be home to two tornado-safe buildings to house Scouts in the camp as well as “neighbors” in the event of severe weather. Brad Olson, program director for the Boy Scouts Northern Lights Council, came before the Hubbard County Board this week requesting the county serve as fiscal agent for the $1.8 million in hazard mitigation grant funds being sought from FEMA. The total cost of project is $2.1 million, the Northern Lights Council will be responsible for a quarter of the project costs and any remaining amount.
Assuming that the hunt has been (or will be) successful, we add a few more venison recipes to the gourmand gallery of game. Venison Stew This rich, complex stew is worthy of a holiday celebration. If you have a choice of cuts, use the chuck or rump, as it’s most tender.
Water and sewer rates for Nevis’ seasonal residents were once again on the council agenda, maintenance supervisor Don Umthun arriving with both the ordinance mandating a service charge as well as water and sewer fund numbers, reflecting operating losses. Seasonal resident Kay Winter told the council she objected to paying over $4,000 “for no service” over the past five years. “I don’t mind paying a maintenance fee, but not a product when there is no product.” “I did the research,” Umthun said, producing documentation.
In a deftly orchestrated surprise, Peg DeYoung walked into the teacher’s lounge Wednesday to learn she is Century School’s Teacher of the Year. The early childhood special education teacher, who’s been “building children’s futures for 40 years,” was greeted with cheers – spawning tears - from past and present coworkers and family members. Hiding (in waiting) behind a table were grandchildren Jack (first grade) and Emma (third grade) Kovach.
Dave Long, who’s been the director of the Hubbard County Food Shelf since 1994, providing inestimable numbers of meals to people in need, is stepping down. Now at 80, “it’s time to turn over the reins,” he said. Bob Hansen, former Hubbard County assessor, is assuming the role. Tuesday, Long was “completely surprised, pleased and humbled” by a corps of volunteers – past and current – arriving for a farewell. In 2014, the Hubbard County Food Shelf assisted 1,660 individuals, 648 families, distributing 38,105 pounds of food.
Retired Air Force aircraft mechanic Michael Whiteside was bound for Iwakuni, Japan this week, returning as an instructor for the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps. His arrival on the island nation holds irony; the 20-year Air Force veteran had originally resisted being sent overseas. “I liked hunting and fishing,” said Whiteside, who began arriving in the north woods from Illinois as a child, his grandparents resort owners. “I had never volunteered to go overseas,” said the husband and father of three.
Horses now roam 40 acres east of Lake George, once home to Daryl Bessler’s elk, bison and yak. This week, eight yak set off for new territory, with the exception of an obstinate bull “that met its Waterloo” after charging the fence several times, resistant to transfer. The bison and elk had been relocated earlier. Chelsey Lizakowski and Addison Homstad are establishing a horse rescue site on the property, as well as a stable for their own equines.